Why Would a Hedgehog be Out in The Day?

Why Would a Hedgehog be Out in The Day?

The trend to keep hedgehogs as pets is on a constant rise. However, since they’re still not very common, people seem to have a lot of questions regarding hedgehogs.

“Why would a hedgehog be out in the day?” is a commonly asked question about this little creature. Hedgehogs do not go out in the day. They spend their days sleeping and come out at night.

This may sound surprising to some users but this is how hedgehogs behave as they are nocturnal animals. They sleep all day and come out at night to hunt and eat.

If you happen to see one during the day then there’s a huge possibility that something’s wrong with the hedgehog and it requires assistance.

Let’s find out why a hedgehog may be out in the day:

It could be sick, pregnant or could have escaped from a store or home. Hedgehogs are prone to infections and diseases which makes them weaker, unable to sleep/hibernate, and follow the usual routine. Therefore, seeing one in the day can possibly mean that the little animal needs help.

If you happen to see one outside your home, in a garden or on a road during broad daylight then you need to determine what’s wrong.

The same goes for pet hedgehogs. If you see one out in the cage during the day, then it’s time to take some actions.

Let’s move ahead:

Notice Its Movement And Health

9 out of 10 times, you see a hedgehog in the day means that it is hungry or sick. To know what’s wrong, maintain a distance and watch them closely. Look at their movements, if they are not moving quickly and stop after taking a few steps then it points towards hunger or sickness.

Introduce Food And Water

If the hedgehog has confined itself to a single place then it might be hungry. Try to bring it some mealworms and water. Do not feed it forcibly. Instead, leave the food and water nearby and stand at a distance to observe if it’s eating or not.

If it’s hungry then it will eat after a few minutes have passed. However, if it refuses to eat then the animal might be sick.  

Bring a warm towel and wrap it in. Hedgehogs can’t bear cold weather. Consider putting the animal in a warm environment. You may bring him home and use a bulb to provide heat.

They might start eating after they’re warm enough.

The Hedgehog Can Be Pregnant

Another reason for a hedgehog to be out in the day could be pregnancy. When a hedgehog mom is expecting, it will go out in the day to collect different materials to prepare a nest.

Same goes for new moms. They also go out to find food while the babies are asleep.

An expecting mom will come out in the day to collect bedding materials because young hedgehog babies can’t bear cold weather. Hence, if you notice that the hedgehog is picking meadows and sticks then it might be preparing for the future.

In such a situation, let the animal do the job. Do not disturb.

What To Do If The Hedgehog Looks Unhappy And Weak?

If it is not eating anything, making a weird grunting noise, and can hardly move then it might be sick.

If such is the case, take the animal to a vet. The expert will examine it and give you a report. Some common causes are:

Reproductive Disease: Female hedgehogs are very vulnerable when they’re pregnant. Some of the most common diseases they suffer from are mammary tumors and uterine cancer. Both of these diseases are dangerous and can kill a hedgehog.

The male hedgehog can also get testicular cancer.

Scratching/Itching: If you see a hedgehog out in the day scratching severely then mites might be the cause. Might often attack hedgehog’s home or cage and find a place in their skin, causing irritation.

This irritation prevents the animal from resting, causing him to go out. This can be a major concern as severe scratching can hurt their quills.

Infections: Hedgehogs may suffer from infections, especially due to the wrong diet. Only a vet will be able to tell you if the animal needs medication.

Why Is The Hedgehog Out in the Day: FAQS

Should you give food to a hedgehog who is roaming in broad daylight?

Yes, but make sure to add some water as well. In fact, water is said to be more important for hedgehogs than food.

If they are already low on water and eat something solid, their body will use up all the remaining water, causing them to get dehydrated. This is why you should always offer them solids with liquids.

What to do if you find a baby hedgehog out in the open during the daytime?

It’s very rare to find a baby hedgehog in the day hours because hedgehog mothers are very cautious about their safety. If you happen to see one in the open then it is a bit concerning.

Baby hedgehogs hardly leave their nest. However, they may escape if they feel danger.

When you see one outside, do not try to hold it or feed it because it is strictly a mother hedgehog’s job. Baby hedgehogs die quickly if they get away from their mothers. Therefore, what you can do is call for animal rescue or take them to a vet.

If possible, try to find their mother so that they can be reunited.

What to do when the Hedgehog seems scared and ready to attack?

Hedgehogs get scared easily. When they sense danger, they will curl up and point out their spikes in defense. Stay away from the animal if it looks ready to fight.

Use a towel to hold it to protect your hands. You should also not try to touch the animal with your hand. It may cause the hedgehog to feel uncomfortable.

Is it risky for hedgehogs to be out in the day?

Yes, the animal may get lost and even get attacked by other animals including cats and dogs.

Hedgehogs cannot defend against other big animals. They are small and also very weak. Your other pets may also cause them to harm unless the two are close to each other. Hence, you should take steps if you see the animal out in the daytime.

Is it normal for hedgehogs to be out at night?

Yes, as mentioned earlier, hedgehogs go out in the dark to hunt.

Should I take out my pet hedgehog during the day?

No, you should not. Let the animal rest. This is how they are made. They like to sleep in the day and will play with you at night.

The Conclusion

Hedgehogs love to sleep during the daytime and even get angry if someone tries to keep them up. Therefore, seeing one in broad daylight is a worrisome thing and such hedgehogs must be checked and taken to a vet.

However, make sure to be careful when holding a hedgehog as they can injure you while trying to defend themselves.